THE DIGITAL STORY RESOURCE CENTER MAINTAINS AN EXTENSIVE ARCHIVE.
What has affectionately been dubbed the "Massive Archive Project" (or more appropriately, the "Massive Archive Problem"), is stored in 350 square feet of warehouse space, containing about 100 cubic yards of materials. The Digital Story Resource center's goal for this archive is to digitize more than 500,000 documents, publications and film files (slides and negatives). Combined with an estimated 500,000 digital files, the archive is well over 1 million items to conserve, catalogue, store, curate and share.
Some of the prominent themes or subjects of the photography files include music, protests, popular culture, counter culture, architecture, nature, parks, festivals, dance, historic information, cultural activities, and much more. The files include many high-quality and journalistic photos of historic or impactful public figures, along with numerous artists and community advocates. There are also thousands of pictures that may not appeal to a mass audience or have academic uses, but rather are meaningful to individuals who would like to see and share the images.
Lacy's archives include photos and interviews with many significant, award-winning figures in creative arts and civil rights, including playwright Edward Albee, visionary artist and architect Doug Michels, civil rights leader and minister William Lawson, and author Colson Whitehead. In many cases, high quality images and interviews with the subjects may be scarce, elevating the urgency to preserve and utilize the archive. (Click images to view larger versions.)
Non-photography documents range from audio files that contain oral histories, speeches and interviews to printed event information that contains both nostalgic and educational information. It will be fun to discover some of the most unique and unexpected items that may have been stored and forgotten - an unintentional time capsule to be opened.
Because of the need to make digital copies of hundreds of thousands of documents that exist in many formats, and to migrate digital media to keep it secure and in current formats, there is an urgent imperative to move forward on the project. More information will be provided as the archive is further explored and the best methods to achieve the highest quality and the most efficient processes develop.
The lessons of the first project will carry into future archive projects and will benefit those who are struggling with similar situations.
The Digital Story Resource Center publishes on-line journals, feature magazines and print publications, maintains archives, provides conservation and documentary services, and offers classes in photography and digital storytelling.
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